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15 in 5 

December 1, 2015

Because I love a list. Especially a random list.
 1. I’m thankful for technology. Really, I am. I can’t quite appreciate the full breadth of my thankfulness, but I’ll get there. My laptop died. Our backup plan, an iPad with a bluetooth keyboard failed, too. I sound spoiled, and these are first world problems, but I can’t do my job without technology. Gone are the days of scrolled paperwork, written with a quill, taken by pigeon’s mouth, to the Metro Spirit office.

2. I’m even more thankful for electricity. Our home is heated and cooled at the appropriate times. I don’t take that for granted. We watched a man and his dog walk by last night, backpack strapped on and over-filled. I hope they have a warm place to sleep.

3. I’m thankful for sleep. Mostly, I’m thankful for children who are good sleepers. They’ve been that way since birth. Yesterday, The Boy slept until 12:30. If they sleep in, we sleep in. Even if we don’t sleep in, we get quiet time while they sleep in.

4. I’m thankful for quiet time. We are busy people. You are, too. A few still minutes each day are good for ya. Try it out.

5. I’m thankful for tryouts. Well, auditions. I don’t always remember to be thankful, when I’m nervous for friends an family, vying for their favorite roles. Auditions get them to the theatre, and that makes them all so very happy.

6. I’m thankful for theatre. Sure, I like the movie theater, too, but what happens in the Imperial is a thing of magic. Performing or watching, people come alive in that place.

7. I’m thankful for magic. Children remind us to believe in magic. Santa, the tooth fairy, or watching cookies bake in the oven.Before there’s an explanation, children see magic.

8. I’m thankful for children. Sometimes I have a hard time remembering to be thankful for all children. The one with a poop-filled diaper, running around the restaurant with a soggy cracker may not be as cute as the others, but it’s all about perspective. It’s really his parents’ fault he’s wearing soiled pants and hasn’t learned manners, yet.

9. I’m thankful for manners. A “thank you for shopping with us,” or “have a nice day” can make a difference in an otherwise crappy day. Someone needs to tell that to the lady at Rite-Aid who tried to tell me how the card reader machine worked. I swiped my card while she was scanning my items. “Um, ma’am. You cannot swipe your card until I give you permission.” There was no shortage of condescension in her tone. “I’m sorry! I didn’t realize y’all had gotten new machines. Usually, I can go ahead and run my card while you finish up. I’ll wait.” I wasn’t mad, but I was certainly baffled. She said, “NO. You see this,” gesturing to my defenseless dry shampoo again, “you can’t PAY for THIS if you’ve swiped your card before I scan this item.” Ok, lady. Whatever. I smiled and wished her a happy day.

10. I’m thankful for dry shampoo. It’s that simple.

11. I’m thankful for simplicity. Everything is complicated these days. People are overly sensitive. I probably just offended a sensitive person. I wish we could keep it simple. Eat what you want. Feed your kids how you want. If you aren’t harming them, who cares? Dress how you want. Unless you’re wearing leggings as pants. Leggings aren’t pants. Pants are pants, and you should wear them. You should wear them around your waist, too. I can’t believe your mama let you out of the house that way. No one wants to see your underwear. Trust me.

12. I’m thankful for Mamas. Until you are one, it’s hard to understand giving up the last cookie so your kid can have it. When you have to leave the park, on the most beautiful day of the year, because you threatened to leave the park if they did that thing one more time, you’re doing the right thing. It’s a Mama thing. Mamas make the best friends to one another. From carpooling to make things easier, to listening to a “why are they not living up to their potential” lament, to googling illness symptoms and saying a prayer it’s not that worst case scenario, it takes a village. One day, the village essential for survival transforms into a village of supportive friends.

13. I’m thankful for friends. Quality over quantity. When family can’t be there, friends fill in. Friends become family.

14. I’m thankful for family. Family can be tricky. We’re told we have to love them no matter what. At times, it isn’t easy. The holidays are the worst. Forced family fun is in full swing.Thanksgiving and Christmas are virtual pressure cookers of emotion. My grandma always cried. Every time we sat around her dining room table. We’d consider ourselves lucky if we weren’t the one who made her cry. Once, after someone cussed at the holiday table (quit judging. They’d cut their finger wide open), my cousin tried, in his thick Tennessee accent, to put it in into perspective. “Shit, Grandma. At least we all have each other to love. Who cares if someone says a bad word.”

15. I’m thankful for love. I love wine. That’s a kid of love I’d hate to miss out on. There’s something lovely about an evening spent with a nice, red, Cali blend. Champagne is delicious, too. Those festive little bubbles! Oh yeah, love. There’s no greater feeling. A hug from my sweet nearly ten year old girl. A front seat of the car hand-hold with my 11.5 year old son. The all-knowing glance from the husband across the room, because only he gets that what she just said was so annoying. Family gathered around a table filled with food (and wine). Announcements of new babies. Hugs and kisses. To quote Huey Lewis, “That’s the power of love.” Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours. Cheers!

*originally published in The Metro Spirit, Augusta GA on 11/26/15

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